DOCTORS in Southampton have designed an hospital ‘passport’ to help improve care and support for older patients.

The document, launched next month, outlines what patients would like staff to know about them to personalise treatment.

Patients will be asked to complete a seven page document which will include a brief history of their lives, family, jobs, places they have lived and pets, hospital services they may find helpful and activities they enjoy.

Detailed health and social care sections cover care received outside of hospital, home situation, levels of eyesight and hearing and any diagnoses of dementia or other mental health conditions.

Patients will also be asked to disclose ways they show pain or distress and the things that help to comfort them.

Clinicians will also record patients’ mobility history over the past six months and any requirements during their admissions, how they take their medications, any help they need with washing and dressing and support for eating and drinking.

Key parts of the log, including what the patient likes to be called, will be placed in a laminated pocket in their bedside folders.

It will be available on the electronic system for any hospital admissions and will help with access to hospital services such as Pets As Therapy and chaplaincy visits.

The project, funded by the Wessex School of Quality Improvement, is being run by Dr Beth McCausland, a quality improvement fellow in dementia care, and Dr Vicki Osman-Hicks, a consultant in older people’s mental health.

It was developed within the medicine for older people (MOP) department at the hospital.

Dr Osman-Hicks, who is dementia lead in MOP said: “

“Lots of vital work has been carried out over recent years to address the needs of older patients with dementia and we have looked at how that can and should be adapted to cater for all older people in hospital. The hospital passport is a great way for clinicians to get to know more about the person they are treating as a whole alongside their clinical needs and we are all extremely excited about its potential.”